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Full text of "Ceramics by Picasso : [Exhibition] 28th March-10th May, 1958"

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ceramics by picasso 



28TH MARCH - 10TH MAY, 195 



INTRODUCTION Although Pablo Picasso has worked in ceramics only 

a comparatively short time, his fresh approach to 
this age-old art has produced much that is new, and 
has exerted a considerable influence upon ceramists 
today. Until now, however, no large body of Picas- 
so's ceramic work has been displayed in New York; 
and the Cooper Union Museum is happy in profiting 
by the temporary presence in the United States of a 
large and representative selection of the artist's 
work in this medium. 

The majority of objects in the exhibition are the 
personal property of Picasso and were selected by 
him for exhibition. Numbers 60-84, 86 and 87 are 
lent by the Poterie Madoura, Vallauris, France, and 
still others are owned by lenders listed individually 
in the catalogue. While all the ceramics were baked 
under the supervision of Monsieur and Madame 
Georges Ramie at the Poterie Madoura, they fall 
into varying categories: Pieces, modelled by Picasso 
himself or fashioned into shapes specified by Picasso 
at the Poterie Madoura, that are decorated and 
glazed by Picasso's own hand (Nos. 1-59); others, 
stamped "Empreinte Originale de Picasso" (Nos. 
60-85), produced in limited editions from moulds 
specially prepared and carved by Picasso; and yet 
others (Nos. 86-92) stamped "Edition Picasso", that 
are copies or interpretations of an original ceramic 
by Picasso, all decoration and glazing by the staff 
of the Poterie Madoura. 

Picasso's first venture into ceramics was acci- 
dental. In 1946 he rented a studio in Golfe Juan on 
the French Riviera. A local painter one day invited 
Picasso to visit a pottery workshop in the neighbor- 
ing village of Vallauris, the Poterie Madoura. Dur- 
ing his visit, Picasso was persuaded to try his hand 



and modelled a small bull. In this casual way began 
Picasso's fascination with ceramics, a fascination 
that during the past ten years has led to the produc- 
tion of ceramic objects of almost every type and 
shape imaginable. 

Plates, plaques, jugs, vases, human and animal 
shapes have supplanted rectangular canvas as re- 
cipients of Picasso's creative force, each conceived 
as a whole, the color and line of its surface organi- 
cally at one with its form. In the creation of his 
unique, highly personal forms, Picasso shows an 
amazing familiarity with ceramic history, sometimes 
suggesting the black-figured ware of ancient Greece, 
sometimes developing the color-sense of eighteenth- 
century European faience. With equal ease he 
makes his comment, slyly or openly comic, on stand- 
ard types of ceramic wares that have long since lost 
the power to communicate any fresh message of 
their own; and he is not above making the same sort 
of joke that good-humored potters have always de- 
lighted in sharing with their kilns. 

Working in ceramics, Picasso has found a solution 
to the instability of oil paint, which is subject to 
gradual deterioration, since the colors of clays and 
glazes, once fired, never change. One is reminded 
of Theophile Gautier's century-old admonition to 
the painter: 

. . . fixe la couleur 

Trop frele 
Au four de I'emailleur 

In offering this selection of Pablo Picasso's ceram- 
ics to its visitors, the Cooper Union Museum records 
its thanks to Monsieur Picasso for his generosity in 
lending these examples of his work, and to Monsieur 
Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler for his help in the neces- 
sary arrangements. To Mr. Henri Marceau, Mr. 
Henry Clifford and Miss Gertrude Toomey, of the 
Philadelphia Museum of Art, is due the Museum's 
gratitude for their unfailing kindness in the transfer 
from Philadelphia to New York of the pieces re- 
cently shown there. The owners of additional pieces 
included in the exhibition — Fine Arts Associates, 
Mrs. Jacques Francois, Mrs. Albert D. Lasker, Mr. 
and Mrs. Howard J. Sachs, Mr. and Mrs. Daniel 
Saidenberg and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Zadok — 
have also been most generous in their loans. 




CATALOGUE NUMBER 1 



1 Goat and Flute Player. Plaque 
14 June, 1948, 8 Vs x 10% 

Red clay, colored slips, incised 

2 Still Life with Coffeepot. Plaque 
August, 1948, 39% x39% 

Fire clay with slip and glaze decoration 

3 Faun Face. Shallow dish 
1 February, 1949, D 14% 

Slip underglaze carved and relief effects. 
Eyes and nose formed by a kilnspur 

4 Fish. Bowl 

1 July, 1950, D 11 
Incised design on red clay 

5 Decorated Cruet. Six-handled vase 
c. 1951, H 16y 2 

Black and blue slip on biscuit 

6 Frog. Six-handled vase 
c. 1951, H I6V2 

Black and blue slip on biscuit 

7 Dots and Dabs. 
Two-handled pot with cover 
c. 1952, H I6V2 

White tin glaze with metal oxides 




CATALOGUE NUMBER 



8 Bulls and Foliage. Two-handled vase 
c. 1952, H 28% 

Glazed with resist design 

9 Double Face. Vase in shape of a cock 
c. 1952, H 26 

Black slip on white fire clay 

10 Two Faces. Pitcher 

6 January, 1953, H 1 6 Vi 
Decorated with metal oxide glazes and 
paraffin resist 

1 1 Pigeon Standing. 

7 January, 1953, H 5% 
Black slip 

12 Four Faces. Vase 

26 January, 1953, H 22 

Metal oxides on white tin glaze, incised 

13 Pigeon on its Nest. 

29 January, 1953, H 6 Vi 
Black and blue slip 

14 Dabs. Dish 

4 March, 1 953, D 15% 
Black resist design 

15 Dabs. Dish 

4 March, 1953, D 17% 
Black resist design 

16 Flowers in a Vase. 
Jug, rim rolled inward 

1 8 April, 1 953, H 1 1 % 
Colored slip on biscuit 

17 Daisies in a Vase. Jug, rim rolled inward 
1 8 April, 1 953, H 1 1 % 

Colored slip on biscuit, painted, carved 

18 Suns and Rays. Jug 
4 June, 1953, H 13% 
Fire clay with pastel slips 

19 Four Faces. Two-handled vase 
4 June, 1953, H 13 

Fire clay, pastel slips 

20 Women and Silenus Head. 
Long-necked pitcher 

3 July, 1953, H 14% 

Fire clay with white and black slip 

21 Woman with Mirror, Groups of Figures. 
Jug 

4 July, 1953, H 13% 

Fire clay with white and black slip 



22 Bulls. Jug 

3 August, 1953, H 14% 

Black slip and white clay, incised 

23 Pigeon. 

14 October, 1953, H 5 Vz 
Black slip, incised 

24 Landscape. Dish 

9 December, 1953, D 16% 

Black slip with incised decoration picked 

out with tinted glazes 

25 Head and Geometric Motifs. Vase 
19 December, 1953, H 10V 2 
Incised decoration with slip and glaze 
on red 

26 Landscape. Dish 
December, 1953, D 16% 

Glaze and white enamel on incised 
black slip 

27 Figures. Jug 

Late 1953, H 11 

White tin glaze on red, resist design 

28 Two Hands Holding a Bird. 

Duck-shaped pitcher 

c. 1953, H 15 

Metal oxides on white tin glaze, incised 

29 Painter and Model. Jug 

5 January, 1954, H 15 
White tin glaze, resist design 

30 Painter and Model. Jug 

6 January, 1 954, H 1 3 3 / 4 
White tin glaze, resist design 

31 Men's Faces. Two-handled vase 

6 January, 1954, H 7% 
White tin glaze, resist design 

32 Painter and Sculptor with Model. Jug 

7 January, 1954, H 11 

White and green glazes, resist design 

33 Circus Act. Jug 

9 January, 1954, H 14% 
White tin glaze, resist design 

34 Face with Broken Nose. Vase 
9 January, 1 954, H 26 % 

Incised and glaze decoration on dark 
ground 



CATALOGUE NUMBER 9 




. 




CATALOGUE NUMBERS 11, 13, 23 



35 Stylized Bird. Pitcher in shape of 
pigeon with flat tail 

1 1 January, 1954, H 1 4 5 / B 

Incised decoration, black slip and white 

glaze with touches of copper green 

36 Vase of Flowers. Jug 

12 January, 1954, H 1 1 % 

Incised and glaze decoration on black 

ground 

37 Three Faces. Jug 

19 January, 1954, H7Vs 

Incised and glaze decoration on black 

ground 

38 Man's Face. Dish 

6 April, 1954, 15% x 13 
Carved under white glaze 

39 Woman's Face. Dish 

6 April, 1954, 15% x 13 

Carved decoration under white glaze 

40 Two Birds in a Cage. 
Jug, rim rolled inward 
10 April, 1954, H 11 % 

Biscuit with colored slips, carved 



41 Two Faces. Two-handled vase 
1 954, H 6 % 

Green-black copper glaze with slip 
decoration 

42 Face. Plate 

c. 1 954, D 9 % 

Slip wash with glaze, filled incised design 

and touches of glaze 

43 Face. Plate 

c. 1954, D9% 

Colored glazes on biscuit 

44 Face. Plate 

c. 1 954, D 9 % 

Colored glazes on biscuit 

45 Face. Plate 

c. 1954, D9% 

Biscuit, glaze-filled incised design 

46 Face. Plate 

c. 1 954, D 9 % 

Biscuit, black slip with colored glazes 

47 Stylized Face. Bowl 
c. 1955, D8% 

Enamelled decoration on blue glaze 
ground 



CATALOGUE NUMBER 31 





CATALOGUE NUMBER 17 



48 Three Faces and Serpentines. 

Long-necked pitcher 

1 956, H 1 5 % 
Carved biscuit 

49 Girl in Chariot Drawn by Faun. Plaque 

9 % x 1 3 

Metal oxides on white tin glaze 

50 Faun and Owl. Plate 
28 April, 1957, D 16 

Red clay, black decoration, partly glazed, 
eyes and nose formed by a kilnspur 
Lent by Fine Arts Associates 

51 Bullfight. Plate 

1 5 x 1 2 y 2 

Painted in blue, black, red and green with 

transparent glaze 

Lent by Mrs. Albert D. Lasker 

52 Red and White Owl. 

22 February, 1953, H 1 3 % 

Painted terra cotta 

Private collection, New York 

53 Owl. Dish 

27 March, 1957, D 17V 2 

Red clay, brown and white slip, incised, 

colored glaze decoration 

Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Saidenberg 

54 Clown. Dish 

31 March, 1957, D 17 

Red clay, brown and white slip, incised, 

colored glaze decoration 

Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Saidenberg 

55 Clown. Dish 

2 April, 1957, D 17 

Red clay, brown and white slip, incised, 

colored glaze decoration 

Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Saidenberg 

56 Fish. Dish 

4 April, 1957, D 17V 2 

Red clay, white slip, applique fish glazed 

in blue, green and sepia 

Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Saidenberg 

57 Seven Fish. Dish 

10 April, 1957, D 1 7 y 4 

Red clay, white, yellow, blue and sepia 

slip, incised 

Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Saidenberg 



58 Big Black Fish. Dish 
16 April, 1957, D 1 7 Va 

Red clay, white, black, yellow and blue 

slip, incised 

Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Saidenberg 

59 Goat's Head. Plate 
16x 16 

Black, green and yellow decoration, glazed 
Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Charles Zadok 

60 Woman's Face. Jug 
20 March, 1954, H 9 
White biscuit 

61 Jacqueline Roque. Plate 

29 January, 1955, D 1 6 Vi 
White biscuit 

62 Head of Sylvette. 

31 March, 1955, D6% 
Red clay 

63 Fish. 

31 March, 1955, D 6 % 
Red clay 

64 Fisherman under a Tree. 
6 March, 1955, D6% 
Red clay 

65 Head of a Faun. 

30 March, 1955, D 6 % 
Red clay 

66 Grasshopper. 

31 March, 1955, D 6 % 
Red clay 

67 Bird. 

31 March, 1955, D 6 3 / 4 
Red clay 

68 Faun's Head. Plate 
28 June, 1955, D 10V 2 
White biscuit 

69 Bouquet and Apple. Plate 
22 January, 1956, D 1 V2 
White biscuit 

70 Dancers. Plaque 
Easter, 1956, D 10V 2 
White biscuit 

71 Goaf. Plate 
Easter, 1956, D 10V 2 
White biscuit 



CATALOGUE NUMBER 28 





CATALOGUE NUMBERS 29, 30 

71 Fish. Dish 

19 May, 1956, D 17 
White biscuit 

73 Bathers. Plaque 
July, 1956, D7% 
White biscuit 

74 Faun and Goat Dancing. Plaque 
July, 1956, D 10V 2 

White biscuit 

75 Dancers. Plate 
July, 1956, D lOVi 
White biscuit 

76 Three Bathers. Dish with domed center 
August, 1956, D 1 2 Vi 

Moulded biscuit painted in black slip 
and glazed 

77 Bull's Head. Plaque 

23 November, 1 956, D 9 % 
White biscuit 

78 Large Vase with Fish. 
1 956, H 1 7 % 

Red slip decoration 



79 Head. Dish 
D 1 6 % 
White biscuit 

80 Cavalier. Dish 
D 17 

White biscuit 

81 Cavalier and Flutist. Dish 
D 14'/ 2 

White biscuit 

82 Dancing Bacchante and Flute Player. 
Dish 

D 13 

White biscuit 

83 Face and Hands. Dish 
D 17 

White biscuit 

84 Face with Ivy Leaves. Dish 
D 17 

White biscuit 

85 Bullfight. Plate 
D 17'/ 2 

White tin glaze, black oxide decoration 
Lent by Mr. and Mrs. Howard J. Sachs 



CATALOGUE NUMBERS 32, 33 




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CATALOGUE NUMBER 4 




86 Two Faces. Vase 
H 14'/ 2 

White biscuit 

87 Two Faces. Vase 
H 14y 2 

White biscuit 

88 Owl. Vase 
H 1 2 1/2 

White tin glaze, brown and black 

decoration 

Lent by Mrs. Jacques Francois 

89 Four Faces. Plate 
1 952, D 1 1/4 

White tin glaze, raised decoration 
Lent by Mrs. Jacques Francois 

90 Goat and Goat's Head. Vase 
6 June, 1952, H 71/2 

Carved, black painted and glazed 

decoration 

Lent by Mrs. Jacques Francois 

91 Head of a Woman. Vase 
H 1 1 1/2 

White tin glaze, black resist 
Lent by Mrs. Jacques Francois 

92 Head of a Woman. Pitcher 
1 957, H 1 5 1/2 

Brown, black and green decoration 
Lent by Mrs. Jacques Francois 



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